Trump says voting by mail can be 'okay,' but there's a catch

Data from Roxanna Moritz & the Iowa Secretary of State shows a dramatic increase in requests for absentee ballots

Data from Roxanna Moritz & the Iowa Secretary of State shows a dramatic increase in requests for absentee ballots

Trump also took the opportunity to take a jab at Biden. He threatened on Twitter to "hold up funding to Michigan" over the false claim that state leaders were "illegally" distributing absentee ballots-rather than absentee ballot applications-to each of its almost eight million residents.

"To really vote and without fraud", Trump said later in MI, "you have to go to the polling place".

A pair of states using federal coronavirus relief to make voting easier during the pandemic faced unspecified threats of financial cuts from President Donald Trump on Wednesday, with the president renewing assertions of fraud connected to voting by mail without presenting any evidence.

Almost one-third of non-voters said they did not vote in recent elections because they either lacked confidence in the Electoral College or thought elections were rigged. Trump also voted absentee in the 2018 midterms, the White House said at the time.

In 2018, MI voters approved a ballot proposal to allow all voters in the state to request absentee ballots. But the way he attacked absentee voting today struck me as genuinely risky and genuinely sort of threatening to democracy.

The president later deleted the tweet and replaced it with one that added "applications".

Mr Trump also threatened Nevada's federal funding, saying the state's move to expand voting by mail created "a great voter fraud scenario".

By the numbers: 61,220 absentee mailed-in ballots were cast across more than 100 cities and towns in Virginia, according to VPAP.

That brought strong criticism from Democrats in MI and elsewhere, pointing out that the state was sending applications, not actual ballots, an error the president corrected in a subsequent tweet six hours later.

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Benson said the Michigan Bureau of Elections has ensured all remaining registered voters receive an application. "I have the authority and responsibility to make sure that they know how to exercise this right", she wrote.

"Like Gov. (Gretchen Whitmer), SOS (Jocelyn Benson) seems to be taking unilateral actions with no input and questionable motives - and that is very troubling", the statement said, according to news site MLive.com.

MI is among states hardest hit by the coronavirus pandemic, and Trump and the state's Democratic governor, Gretchen Whitmer, have clashed over federal assistance during the crisis. MI has the 7 highest number of infections in the United States. Since 2000, there have been billions of ballots cast in America.

The stimulus bill passed by the senate on March 25 includes $400 million for states to allow vote by mail, expand early voting and online registration, and hire more workers, but it doesn't include a mandate.

The letter included with the application reminds residents "You have the right to vote by mail in every election" and that there are upcoming elections in August and November for MI.

Both Republicans and Democrats run absentee and mail-in voting programs as part of their get-out-the-vote operations. Dave Wasserman, an elections analyst at the nonpartisan Cook Political Report, tweeted that Michigan's move "quite possibly would *aid* his prospects by turning out more low-education whites".

"I will tell you this. Massive", Trump claimed Wednesday.

"They pick the ballot - they take them out of mailboxes. A lot of things can happen".

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